Humanization of Tech: It's About What Users Want and How They Work

Everyone's been kvelling over Siri since the iPhone 4GS was released a month ago. But Apple's "virtual personal assistant" is just the natural evolution of technology being built around our needs, wants and desires.

That's exactly why so much popular science fiction has been written around the idea that one day robots will tire of being our slaves and will rise up and rebel. "Terminator," "I, Robot," "Battlestar Galactica" (the new version) all show us what happens. So don't be surprised when Siri starts trying to boss you around.

It's interesting, though, because early technology was primarily introduced in an effort to get more work out of us. By making us more productive, more could get done. The printing press, the Industrial Revolution, computers - all developed to get things done faster and more efficiently than could be done by humans alone.

In the past 40 or 50 years, however, more and more technology has been created to cater to the needs of the individual.

Video games, cellular phones, smartphones, social networks - these all enable us to do things we want, moreso than what we need, to do. And technology is increasingly designed around how we do things, rather than making us learn how to do something entirely new.

This infographic from SocialCast takes a look at the inevitable march toward domination by our robot overloards. We already have Siri, robot-assisted surgeries, GPS that occasionally gives accurate directions, Pandora's music genome project and driverless cars. And even though driverless cars aren't in use yet, can they really do any worse than half the drivers on the road today?

  Source: SocialCast